Saturday, December 29, 2012

Moving Over Snow

My first memories of cross country skiing are a mixed bag. One one hand, I remember the heavy, wet, cotton t-shirt sticking to my chest and gloves so thick with perspiration that I could wring them out to get a drink with all the while wondering out in the middle of a trail when will it be over? When will I see the lodge (aka: golf course clubhouse) and be able to turn in these stiff boots and pencil thin skis and retreat to the car with maybe a Snickers and Hot Chocolate?

 On the other hand, I remember gliding through the trail at a snails pace at the wonder and beauty of a winter wonderland. I didn't crave the speed down a hill, I wanted and needed to soak it in. My body working hard to get into some sort of rhythm and knowing that not when I was done, but later on, that I would have a pleasant dull ache in my muscles. I was 12.

When we moved to Michigan, my dad thought it would be fun to take my sister and I cross country skiing. The first time it was hard. Trying to snap into the three holes on the skis and getting up when you would inevitably fall down were all to common. However, once locked in and gliding along, it was for me a lot like running. Steady as it goes and gliding into a flow. Little did I know that he had planted the seeds in me for it to become a seasonal sport that I look forward to.

These memories, long since thought about, came flooding back when I strapped on my skis the first time this season. Untouched powder on a rolling golf course was all mine. I was free to carve a path up for others to follow if they so choose. Free to move on the snow in a graceful glide.

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